A lecturer has been arrested for sedition after a section of students alleged that he had made anti-India comments at a college in Jammu and Kashmir’s Bani. Shah Nawaz, the lecturer from Dogripora in Kashmir’s Awantipura, has been sacked. Kathua’s Principal Sessions Judge Vinod Chatterji Koul rejected Nawaz’s bail application on Saturday saying that there were grounds to believe that he had committed the offence.
Sources said that Nawaz had made the comments on November 30 following the killing of seven soldiers in an attack on an army camp in Nagrota. Nawaz had allegedly intervened during a discussion among students and commented on gunfights between militants and armed forces.
Four students, Manoj Kumar, Tilak Raj, Ganesh Kumar and Subash, filed a police complaint against Nawaz quoting him as allegedly saying: “Pakistani sheron ki tarah aate hein, Hindustaniyo ko marte hein aur wapas chale jatey hein (Pakistanis come here as lions, kill Indians and then go back across the border). There are 150 militants armed with AK 47 rifles in Kashmir for whom I can even give my life and provide all sorts of assistance.’’ The complainants blamed Nawaz’s “anti-national lecturers’’ for “disturbing peace on the campus with Muslim students coming to their classes in Afghan dresses’’.
The lecturer’s comments had angered the Hindu students, who boycotted classes and held a demonstration before filing a police complaint. The police took the lecturer into custody and registered a case against him as the situation was threatening to go out of hand. The matter was brought to the notice of Education Minister Naeem Akhtar, who ordered Nawaz’s sacking.
Sub Divisional Magistrate Ajeet Singh said that the situation was back to normal and classes had resumed. But sources said that the situation was still volatile as Nawaz’s arrest has polarised the campus.